The demolition of the Polson Spray Park could cost the City of Vernon upwards of $45,000. (Lisa VanderVelde - file photo)

The demolition of the Polson Spray Park could cost the City of Vernon upwards of $45,000. (Lisa VanderVelde - file photo)

Pop-up spray parks coming to Vernon this summer

Play boxes will also be reinstated with closure of Polson’s spray park

Some summer fun will continue to make a splash in Vernon despite the Polson Park Spray Park being demolished.

A series of pop-up spray parks are planned using the Vernon Fire Department trucks, with pressure-reduced spray.

“I think it’s a great idea,” Coun. Scott Anderson said.

The city is only planning to put on four or five of these events, which cost an estimated $500 each. To ensure there are more opportunities to cool off, Anderson has offered to sponsor one through his personal business and would like to see more local businesses do the same.

“Four or five times throughout the year is not really a substitute for the spray park,” Anderson said.

The pop-up spray parks are in conjunction with the Vernon Fire Department’s 130th birthday.

In addition to these, the city is also looking at enhancing and re-opening Unplug and Play boxes in parks.

Play boxes are locked boxes at playgrounds that contain equipment for families to use while visiting. These have been provided by the North Okanagan Optimist Club. To gain access, families must register with Recreation Services to obtain the code that opens the box.

Currently, five parks in Vernon have these boxes but the club has donated two more to be installed this spring.

COVID-19 has kept the boxes closed over this past year, but city staff have met with a representative and proposes reopening the boxes this year with the addition of sanitizing supplies and play-safe signage.

The combined boxes and splash events are budgeted at $15,000.

The demolition and transformation of the Polson Spray Park splash pad are expected to cost around $45,000.

Vernon city council approved the closure of the popular spray park in February due to flooding in the park and public health concerns.

The demolition will see all fencing, spray features, rubberized material, asphalt and piping removed. The water line would be capped off at the building and the splash-pad system abandoned inside. Sod would be placed after the area is compacted with fill and topsoil.

This work will allow for a quick turnaround into a passive play area.

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Caitlin.clow@vernonmorningstar.com

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